Chapter 8 (Book 2)
The interesting thing about talking with You is that You always leave me with more questions than answers. Now I have questions about politics as well as sex!
Some say they're the same thing, that in politics all you ever do is get-
Wait a minute! You're not going to use an obscenity, are You?
Well, yes, I thought I would shock you a little.
Hey, HEY! Cut it out! God isn't supposed to talk like that!
Then why do you?
Most of us don't.
The hell you don't.
Those people who are God fearing don't!
Oh, I see, you have to fear God in order not to offend Him.
And who says I am offended, anyway, by a simple word? And, finally, don't you find it interesting that a word some of you use in the height of passion to describe great sex, you also use as your highest insult? Does that tell you anything about the way you feel about sexuality?
I think You've gotten confused. I don't think people use that term to describe a glorious, truly romantic sexual moment.
Oh, really? Have you been in any bedrooms lately?
No. Have You?
I am in all of them-all the time.
Well, that should make us all feel comfortable.
What? Are you saying that you do things in your bedroom that you wouldn't do in front of God-?
Most people aren't comfortable with anyone watching, much less God.
Yet in some cultures-Aboriginal, some Polynesian- lovemaking is done quite openly.
Yes, well, most people haven't progressed to that level of freedom. In fact, they would consider such behavior regression -to a primitive, pagan state.
These people you call "pagans" have an enormous respect for life. They know nothing of rape, and there are virtually no killings in their societies. Your society puts sex -a very natural, normal human function-under cover, then turns around and kills people right out in the open. That is the obscenity!
You've made sex so dirty, shameful, taboo, that you're embarrassed to do it!
Nonsense. Most people simply have a different-they might even say a higher-sense of propriety about sex. They consider it a private interacting; for some, a sacred part of their relationship.
Lack of privacy does not equal lack of sanctity. Most of humanity's most sacred rites are performed in public. Do not confuse privacy with sanctity. Most of your worst actions are taken in private, and you save only your best behavior for public display.
This is not an argument for public sex; it is merely a noting that privacy does not necessarily equal sanctity-nor does publicity rob you of it.
As for propriety, that single word and the behavioral concept behind it have done more to inhibit men's and women's greatest joys than any other human construction- except the idea that God is punitive-which finished the job.
Apparently, you don't believe in propriety.
The trouble with "propriety" is that someone has to set the standards. This means, automatically, that your behaviors are being limited, directed, dictated by someone else's idea of what should bring you joy.
In matters of sexuality-as in all other matters-this can be more than "limiting"; it can be devastating. I can think of nothing more sad than a man or woman feeling they'd like to experience some thing, then holding back because they think that what they've dreamt of, fantasized about, would violate the "Standards of Propriety"! Mind you, it's not something that they wouldn't do-it's just something that violates "propriety."
Not just in matters of sexuality, but in all of life, never, ever, ever, fail to do something simply because it might violate someone else's standards of propriety.
If I had one bumper sticker on my car, it would read:
I would certainly put such a sign in every bedroom.
But our sense of what's "right" and "wrong" is what holds society together. How can we cohabitate if we have no agreement on that?
"Propriety" has nothing to do with your relative values of "rightness" or "wrongness." You might all agree that it's "wrong" to kill a man, but is it "wrong" to run naked in the rain? You might all agree that it's "wrong" to take a neighbor's wife, but is it "wrong" to "take" your own wife-or have your wife "take" you-in a particularly delicious way? "Propriety" seldom refers to legalistic limitations, but more often to simpler matters of what is deemed "appropriate."
"Appropriate" behavior is not always the behavior that's in what you call your "best interests." It is rarely the behavior that brings you the most joy.
Getting back to sexuality, You're saying, then, that any behavior is acceptable behavior so long as there is mutual consent among all those involved and affected?
Shouldn't that be true of all of life?
But sometimes we don't know who will be affected, or how- You must be sensitive to that. You must be keenly aware. And where you truly cannot know, and cannot guess, you must err on the side of Love.
The central question in ANY decision is, "What would love do now?"
Love for yourself, and love for all others who are affected or involved.
If you love another, you will not do anything that you believe could or would hurt that person. If there is any question or doubt, you will wait until you can get to clarity on the matter.
But that means others can hold you "hostage." All they have to say is that such and such a thing would "hurt" them, and your actions are restricted.
Only by your Self. Wouldn't you want to restrict your own actions to those which do not damage the ones you love?
But what if you feel damaged by not doing something?
Then you must tell your loved one your truth-that you are feeling hurt, frustrated, reduced by not doing a certain thing; that you would like to do this thing; that you would like your loved one's agreement that you may do it.
You must strive to seek such an agreement. Work to strike a compromise; seek a course of action in which everybody can win.
And if such a course cannot be found?
Then I'll repeat what I have said before:
Betrayal of yourself
in order not to betray another
is Betrayal nonetheless.
It is the Highest Betrayal.
Your Shakespeare put this another way:
To thine own Self be true,
and it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false
to any man.
But the man who always "goes with" what he wants becomes a very selfish man. I can't believe You are advocating this.
You assume that man will always make what you call the "selfish choice." I tell you this: Man is capable of making the highest choice.
Yet I also tell you this:
The Highest Choice is not always the choice which seems to serve another.
In other words, sometimes we must put ourselves first.
Oh, always you must put yourselves first! Then, depending upon what you are trying to do-or what you are seeking to experience-you will make your choice.
When your purpose-your life purpose-is very high, so will your choices also be.
Putting yourself first does not mean being what you term "selfish"-it means being self aware.
You lay a pretty broad basis for the conduct of human affairs.
It is only through the exercise of the greatest freedom that the greatest growth is achieved-or even possible. If all you are doing is following someone else's rules, then you have not grown, you have obeyed.
Contrary to your constructions, obedience is not what I want from you. Obedience is not growth, and growth is what I desire.
And if we do not "grow," you throw us in hell, right?
Wrong. But I have discussed that in Book 1, and we'll do so at length in Book 3.
Okay. So, within these broad parameters you've laid out, may I ask you some final questions about sex before we leave the subject?
If sex is so wonderful a part of the human experience, why do so many spiritual teachers preach abstinence? And why were so many masters apparently celibate?
For the same reason most of them have been depicted as living simply. Those who evolve to a high level of understanding bring their bodily desires into balance with their minds and souls.
You are three-part beings, and most people experience themselves as a body. Even the mind is forgotten after age 30. No one reads anymore. No one writes. No one teaches. No one learns. The mind is forgotten. It is not nourished. It is not expanded. No new input. The minimum output required. The mind is not fed. It is not awakened. It is lulled, dulled. You do everything you can to disengage it. Television, movies, pulp paper-backs. Whatever you do, don't think, don't think, don't think!
So most people live life on a body level. Feed the body, clothe the body, give the body "stuff." Most people haven't read a good book-I mean a book from which they can learn something-in years. But they can tell you the entire television schedule for the week. There's something extraordinarily sad in that.
The truth is, most people don't want to have to think. They elect leaders, they support governments, they adopt religions requiring no independent thought.
"Make it easy for me. Tell me what to do."
Most people want that. Where do I sit? When do I stand? How should I salute? When do I pay? What do you wish me to do?
What are the rules? Where are my boundaries? Tell me, tell me, tell me. I'll do it-somebody just tell me! Then they get disgusted, disillusioned. They followed all the rules, they did as they were told. What went wrong? When did it turn sour? Why did it fall apart?
It fell apart the moment you abandoned your mind-the greatest creative tool you ever had.
It's time to make friends with your mind again. Be a companion to it-it's felt so alone. Be a nourisher of it-it's been so starved.
Some of you-a small minority-have understood that you have a body and a mind. You've treated your mind well. Still, even among those of you who honor your mind-and things of the mind-few have learned to use the mind at more than one-tenth its capacity. If you knew of what your mind is capable, you would never cease to partake of its wonders-and its powers.
And if you think the number of you who balance your life between your body and your mind is small, the number who see yourselves as three-part beings-Body, Mind, and Spirit-is minuscule.
Yet you are three-part beings. You are more than your body, and more than a body with a mind.
Are you nurturing your soul? Are you even noticing it? Are you healing it or hurting it? Are you growing or withering? Are you expanding or contracting?
Is your soul as lonely as your mind? Is it even more neglected? And when was the last time you felt your soul being expressed? When was the last time you cried with joy? Wrote poetry? Made music? Danced in the rain? Baked a pie? Painted anything? Fixed something that was broken? Kissed a baby? Held a cat to your face? Hiked up a hill? Swam naked? Walked at sunrise? Played the harmonica? Talked 'til dawn? Made love for hours... on a beach, in the woods? Communed with nature? Searched for God?
When was the last time you sat alone with the silence, traveling to the deepest part of your being? When was the last time you said hello to your soul?
When you live as a single-faceted creature, you become deeply mired in matters of the body: Money. Sex. Power. Possessions. Physical stimulations and satisfactions. Security. Fame. Financial gain.
When you live as a dual-faceted creature, you broaden your concerns to include matters of the mind. Companionship; creativity; stimulation of new thoughts, new ideas; creation of new goals, new challenges; personal growth.
When you live as a three-part being, you come at last into balance with yourself. Your concerns include matters of the soul: spiritual identity; life purpose; relationship to God; path of evolution; spiritual growth; ultimate destiny.
As you evolve into higher and higher states of consciousness, you bring into full realization every aspect of your being.
Yet evolution does not mean dropping some aspects of Self in favor of others. It simply means expanding focus; turning away from almost exclusive involvement with one aspect, toward genuine love and appreciation for all aspects.
Then why do so many teachers espouse complete abstinence from sex?
Because they do not believe that humans can achieve a balance. They believe the sexual energy-and the energies surrounding other worldly experiences-is too powerful to simply moderate; to bring into balance. They believe abstinence is the only way to spiritual evolution, rather than merely one possible result of it.
Yet isn't it true that some beings who are highly evolved have "given up sex"?
Not in the classic sense of the words "to give up." It is not a forced letting go of something you still want but know is "no good to have." It's more of a simple releasing, a movement away from-as one pushes one-self away from the second helping of dessert. Not because the dessert is no good. Not even because it's no good for you. But simply because, wonderful as it was, you've had enough.
When you can drop your involvement with sex for that reason, you may want to do so. Then again, you may not. You may never decide that you've "had enough" and may always want this experience, in balance with the other experiences of your Beingness.
That's okay. That's all right. The sexually active are no less qualified for enlightenment, no less spiritually evolved, than the sexually inactive.
What enlightenment and evolution do cause you to drop is your addiction to sex, your deep need to have the experience, your compulsive behaviors.
So, too, your preoccupation with money, power, security, possessions, and other experiences of the body will vanish. Yet your genuine appreciation for them will not and should not. Appreciation for all of life is what honors the Process I have created. Disdain for life or any of its joys-even the most basic, physical ones-is disdain for Me, the Creator.
For when you call My creation unholy, what do you call Me? Yet when you call My creation sacred, you sanctify your experience of it, and Me as well.
I tell you this: I have created nothing disdainful-and, as your Shakespeare said, nothing is "evil" lest thinking make it so.
This leads me to some other, final, questions about sex. Is any kind of sex between consenting adults okay?
I mean even "kinky" sex? Even loveless sex? Even gay sex?
First, let's be once again clear that nothing is disapproved of by God.
I do not sit here in judgment, calling one action Good and another Evil.
(As you know, I have discussed this at some length in Book 1.)
Now-within the context of what serves you, or disserves you, on your Path of Evolution, only you can decide that. There is a broad-based guideline, however, upon which most evolved souls have agreed.
No action which causes hurt to another leads to rapid evolution.
There is a second guideline as well.
No action involving another may be taken without the other's agreement and permission.
Now let us consider the questions you've just asked within the context of these guidelines.
"Kinky" sex? Well, if it hurts no one, and is done with everyone's permission, what reason would anyone have to call it "wrong"?
Loveless sex? Sex for the "sake of sex" has been debated from the beginning of time. I often think whenever I hear this question that I'd like to go into a roomful of people someday and say, "Everybody here who's never had sex outside of a relationship of deep, lasting, committed, abiding love, raise your hand."
Let me just say this: Loveless anything is not the fastest way to the Goddess.
Whether it's loveless sex or loveless spaghetti and meat balls, if you've prepared the feast and are consuming it without love, you're missing the most extraordinary part of the experience.
Is it wrong to miss that? Here again, "wrong" may not be the operative word. "Disadvantageous" would be closer, given that you desire to evolve into a higher spiritual being as rapidly as you can.
Gay sex? So many people want to say that I am against gay sexuality-or the acting out of it. Yet I make no judgment, on this or any other choice you make.
People want to make all kinds of value judgments- about everything-and I kind of spoil the party. I won't join them in those judgments, which is especially disconcerting to those who say that I originated them.
I do observe this: There was once a time when people thought that marriage between people of differing races was not only inadvisable, but against the law of God. (Amazingly, some people still think this.) They pointed to their Bible as their authority-even as they do for their authority on questions surrounding homosexuality.
You mean it is okay for people of differing races to join together in marriage?
The question is absurd, but not nearly as absurd as some people's certainty that the answer is "no."
Are the questions on homosexuality equally absurd?
You decide. I have no judgment about that, or anything. I know you wish that I did. That would make your lives a lot easier. No decisions to make. No tough calls. Everything decided for you. Nothing to do but obey. Not much of a life, at least in terms of creativity or self-empowerment, but what the heck... no stress, either.
Let me ask You some questions about sex and children. At what age is it appropriate to allow children to become aware of sexuality as a life experience?
Children are aware of themselves as sexual beings- which is to say, as human beings-from the outset of their lives. What many parents on your planet now do is try to discourage them from noticing that. If a baby's hand goes to the "wrong place," you move it away. If a tiny child begins to find moments of self-pleasure in its innocent delight with its own body, you react in horror, and pass that sense of horror on to your child. The child wonders, what did I do, what did I do? Mommy's mad; what did I do?
With your race of beings, it has not been a question of when you introduce your offspring to sex, it has been a question of when you stop demanding that they deny their own identity as sexual beings. Somewhere between the ages of 12 and 17 most of you give up the fight already and say, essentially (although naturally not with words-you don't speak of these things), "Okay, now you can notice that you have sexual parts and sexual things to do with them."
Yet by this time the damage has been done. Your children have been shown for ten years or more that they are to be ashamed of those body parts. Some are not even told the proper name for them. They hear everything from "wee we" to "your bottom" to words some of you must strain mightily to invent-all to avoid simply saying "penis" or "vagina."
Having thus gotten very clear that all things having to do with those parts of the body are to be hidden, not spoken of, denied, your offspring then explode into puberty not knowing at all what to make of what's going on with them. They've had no preparation at all. Of course, they then act miserable, responding to their newest and most urgent urges awkwardly, if not inappropriately.
This is not necessary, nor do I observe it as serving your offspring, far too many of whom enter their adult lives with sexual taboos, inhibitions, and "hang ups" to beat the band.
Now in enlightened societies offspring are never discouraged, reprimanded, or "corrected" when they begin to find early delight in the nature of their very being. Nor is the sexuality of their parents-that is, the identity of their parents as sexual beings-particularly avoided or necessarily hidden. Naked bodies, whether of the parents or the children or their siblings, are seen and treated as being totally natural, totally wonderful, and totally okay-not as things of which to be ashamed.
Sexual functions are also seen and treated as totally natural, totally wonderful, and totally okay.
In some societies, parents couple in full view of their offspring-and what could give children a greater sense of the beauty and the wonder and the pure joy and the total okayness of the sexual expression of love than this? For parents are constantly modeling the "rightness" and "wrongness" of all behaviors, and children pick up subtle and not-so-subtle signals from their parents about everything through what they see their parents thinking, saying, and doing.
As noted earlier, you may call such societies "pagan" or "primitive," yet it is observable that in such societies rape and crimes of passion are virtually nonexistent, prostitution is laughed at as being absurd, and sexual inhibitions and dysfunctions are unheard of.
While such openness is not recommended just now for your own society (in all but the most extraordinary of settings it would no doubt be far too culturally stigmatizing), it is time that the so-called modern civilizations on your planet do something to end the repression, guilt, and shame which too often surrounds and characterizes the totality of your society's sexual expression and experience.
Stop teaching children from the very beginning of their lives that things having to do with the very natural functioning of their bodies are shameful and wrong. Discontinue demonstrating to your offspring that anything sexual is to be hidden. Allow your children to see and observe the romantic side of you. Let them see you hugging, touching, gently fondling-let them see that their parents love each other and that showing their love physically is something that is very natural and very wonderful. (It would surprise you to know in how many families such a simple lesson has never been taught.) When your children begin to embrace their own sexual feelings, curiosities and urges, cause them to connect this new and expanding experience of themselves with an inner sense of joy and celebration, not guilt and shame. And for heaven sake, stop hiding your bodies from your children. It's okay if they see you swimming in the nude in a country water hole on a camping trip or in the backyard pool; don't go into apoplexy should they catch a glimpse of you moving from the bedroom to the bathroom without a robe; end this frantic need to cover up, close off, shut down any opportunity, however innocent, for your child to be introduced to you as a being with your own sexual identity. Children think their parents are asexual because their parents have portrayed themselves that way. They then imagine that they must be this way, because all children emulate their parents. (Therapists will tell you that some grown-up offspring have, to this very day, the most difficult time imagining their parents actually "doing it," which, of course, fills these offspring-now patients in the therapist's office-with rage or guilt or shame, because they, naturally, desire to "do it," and they can't figure out what's wrong with them.)
So talk about sex with your children, laugh about sex with your children, teach them and allow them and remind them and show them how to celebrate their sexuality. That is what you can do for your children. And you do this from the day they are born, with the first kiss, the first hug, the first touch they receive from you, and that they see you receiving from each other.
Thank You. Thank You. I was so hoping that You'd bring some sanity to this subject. But one find question. When is it appropriate to specifically introduce or discuss or describe sexuality with your children?
They will tell you when that time has come. Each child will make it clear, unmistakably, if you are really watching and listening. It comes in increments, actually. It arrives incrementally. And you will know the age-appropriate way of dealing with the incremental arrival of your child's sexuality if you are clear, if you are finished with your own "unfinished business" about all of this.
How do we get to that place?
Do what it takes. Enroll in a seminar. See a therapist. Join a group. Read a book. Meditate on it. Discover each other-most of all, discover each other as male and female again; discover, revisit, regain, reclaim your own sexuality. Celebrate that. Enjoy that. Own that.
Own your own joyful sexuality, and then you can allow and encourage your children to own theirs.
Again, thank You. Now, getting away from the consideration of children and moving back to the larger subject of human sexuality, I have to ask You one more question. And it may seem impertinent and it may seem flippant even, but I can't let this dialogue end without asking it.
Well, stop apologizing and just ask it.
Fine. Is there such a thing as "too much" sex?
No. Of course not. But there is such a thing as too much of a need for sex.
I suggest this:
Including people. Especially people. Needing someone is the fastest way to kill a relationship.
But we all like to feel needed.
Then stop it. Like to feel unneeded instead-for the greatest gift you can give someone is the strength and the power not to need you, to need you for nothing.
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